Three collisions ocurred near Tiverton Police headquarters since Tuesday when the state Department of Transportation activated a stop light where the Route 24 exit 6 off ramp intersects Fish Road.
According to Lt. Patrick Jones, the traffic light has been blinking yellow and red since its installation in the summer of 2009 to warn motorists to slow down. It was originally installed as part of the DOT's efforts to improve traffic patterns under it's Economic Recovery Plan, funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The new Sakonnet River Bridge is also being constructed with funds from this program.
On Tuesday, the DOT made it an active stop light, which has apparently caused some confusion for motorists not used to stopping.
"It didn't appear as if there were any injuries, but the accidents all had the potential to be serious," said Jones in an interview on Friday afternoon. "We are taking steps with the DOT to improve awareness and get people accustomed to stopping here."
The light was activated ease traffic redirected to the Fish Road exit from the closure of Exit 5 due to Sakonnet River Bridge construction.
"We are working with DOT for better signage to get people accustomed to stopping," said Jones.
Check back with Patch for updates on how the town will work with the state Department of Transportation to reduce collisions.